Friday, November 14, 2014

Elementary Season 3 Episode 3 "Just a Regular Irregular" – Recap and Review

Elementary Sherlock Holmes Jonny Lee Miller in Season 3 Episode 3 Just a Regular Irregular

The episode opens with a quick refresher of the second episode of the second season, “Solve for X”. We had met Harlan Emple (Rich Sommer), the mathematician who was solving a mathematics puzzle being completely naked in the brownstone.

Harlan is back. He is playing a mathematics game “Belphegor's Prime” and encounters the corpse of a man over the course of the game. He calls 911 and is taken into custody as the main suspect.

At the brownstone, Kitty Winter (Ophelia Lovibond) is practicing single stick fighting. Yes, the people behind Elementary clearly love showing this over and over again.

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There is a knife thrower in the apartment and Sherlock is taking his help in solving the mystery behind a circus accident in the 50s. This talented individual is none other than NFL Legend Phillip Simms playing himself.

Joan Watson (Lucy Liu) offers a chance to Kitty to spy on one Keswick. Kitty claims to work only for Sherlock Holmes (Jonny Lee Miller) and refuses to help Joan, despite being offered a share of Joan's commission.

Sherlock comes to Harlan's rescue and takes up the responsibility lf clearing his name. Harlan informs Sherlock that there were a total of nine competitors, including himself, in the game.

Harlan Emple Rich Sommer with Jonny Lee Miller as Sherlock Holmes in CBS Elementary Season 3 Episode 3 Just a Regular Irregular

One of the other players is Beka (Audrey Lynn Weston). She corrects Harlan that there were totally sixteen players. Next on the list is Paul Ladesma (Jacob Pitts). Paul explains about an anonymous mathematician who has been exposing government secrets.

Sherlock deduces that Harlan is the person Paul is after. I can go on with the rest of the plot, but this is the bottom line: This is hands down the weakest episode of the third season.

The mystery component was OK. The initial setup was interesting, but the rest of the episode did not live up the expectations.

The worst part was the handling of the conclusion. Readers familiar with Elementary know that the murderer/culprit is usually the character who is introduced and disappears shortly. By this rule, I had guessed the killer to be either Beka or Paul. 

Sherlock anonymously calls Paul and gives him Harlan's address. In the next scene (after the commercial break), we see Sherlock meeting Harlan at his place.

While Sherlock explains to Harlan, an unseen person is seen approaching. I was hoping that this person would turn out to be Beka. But it is none other than Paul, whom we just saw being contacted by Sherlock in the previous scene.

I was just dumbfounded by this revelation. What was the use of building up so much suspense when the resolution is so certifiably anti-climactic.

Joan Watson and Kitty Winter Sherlock Holmes new apprentice in CBS Elementary Season 3 Episode 3 Just a Regular Irregular

The subplot has Joan patching things up with Kitty Winter. Readers might remember that Joan accosted Kitty and engaged her in a single stick fight in the first episode.

Though Kitty initially refuses to work on Joan's case, she agrees to do so on Sherlock's instruction. With Kitty's help, Joan is able to solve the case.

In addition, Joan suggests to Sherlock that he have Kitty admitted to some kind of counseling session. Kitty is revealed to be a rape victim. Kitty acknowledges Joan's help and starts attending counseling.

Any readers out there seeking counselling can check out BetterHelp. As of April 2017, more than 1,500,000 people signed up to BetterHelp and over 2,500 counselors provided services through the platform.

Acting wise, it is the same story. Lucy Liu as Joan Watson gives the best performance. Ophelia is adequate as Kitty Winter. She seems to be going through the motions.

Joan Watson Lucy Liu in CBS Elementary Season 3 Episode 3 Just a Regular Irregular

Guest star Rich Sommer is good as the mathematician obsessed with solving puzzles. But his habit of going barechested is quite jarring. Speaking of which, he is not the only character to display male nudity. Joan's boyfriend Andrew Mittal (Raza Jaffrey) also goes shirtless after an unnecessary scene showing him and Joan in bed. 

It seems nudity is the norm when it comes to the recent Sherlock Holmes adaptations. In the first Guy Ritchie movie, both Sherlock Holmes (Robert Downey Jr.) and Irene Adler (Rachel McAdams) both bare their skin. In the sequel, it is the turn of Mycroft Holmes (Stephen Fry).

Again in the BBC show Sherlock, Sherlock (Benedict Cumberbatch) and Irene Adler (Lara Pulver) similary showed some skin.

The only difference being, unlike this show, the other two adaptations are much better in terms of production values, acting leads, music and pretty much every conceivable aspect. 

Click here to read all my posts about CBS Elementary. 

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Image Source: CBS Broadcasting, Inc.